- The $3 Million Pegasus World Cup will be run on Saturday at Gulfstream Park
- Several rules have changed for this year’s event
- Omaha Beach is a big favorite. Bet him or fade him?
The Pegasus World Cup began as a unique race in the Sport of Kings. Started in 2017, it had the biggest purse of the year, and there was a buy-in of $1 million.
The inaugural event featured a $12 million purse and was won by perhaps the world’s top horse, Arrogate. In 2018 the purse was upped to $16 million and superstar Gun Runner was victorious. Last year the buy-in was cut in half, the prize reduced to $7 million, and good but not great City of Light got to the wire first. This year the buy-in is gone and the purse is just $3 million.
Because of the changes the field is good but not great though Omaha Beach may be elite. Let’s look at the contenders and see where we can find value.
2020 Pegasus World Cup Odds
|Spun to Run||+225|
|Seeking the Soul||+4000|
Odds taken Jan. 18th.
The Favorite: Omaha Beach
In 10 career races he has finished first or second nine times. A throat ailment kept him out of the Triple Crown last year, but the winner of the Rebel Stakes and Arkansas Derby would have been a favorite in Louisville.
He returned to the track in October and has run three times at Santa Anita. He won the Sprint Championship, finished second in the Breeders Cup Dirt Mile, and won the Malibu Stakes.
While Omaha Beach is certainly beatable, he is the deserving favorite for trainer Richard Mandella and jockey Mike Smith.
Top Contenders: Spun to Run & Higher Power
Spun to Run has five wins in 12 starts and beat Omaha Beach rather easily in the Breeders Cup Dirt Mile.
After winning at the Breeders Cup, he finished second in December’s Cigar Mile in New York. The winner, Maximum Security, finished first at the Kentucky Derby but was disqualified.
Spun to Run raced primarily in Pennsylvania last year, not the big leagues of the sport, but when challenged he responded. He finished a strong third at the Haskell Invitational, and has been very good of late.
Higher Power has taken the hard road to this race. He has run against the best horses in the country, winning the Pacific Classic, and finishing third in the Breeders Cup Classic.
Since moving into the barn of trainer John Sadler, Higher Power has been excellent. That said, he has a history of slow starts. Sandler trained Accelerate, who won the Breeders Cup Classic last year but finished third as the favorite in the Pegasus.
Longshots: Seeking the Soul
In a race with lots of young talent, Seeking the Soul is a veteran who likes the track based on two appearances in this race. Trainer Dallas Stewart has a history of producing live longshots, and this seven-year-old finished second in the Pegasus last year.
He has not run well recently, but Seeking the Soul might be able to take advantage of a lot of early speed and rally up late.
The Bet: Spun to Run
While Omaha Beach is probably the class of the field, Spun to Run beat him head-to-head, and is more than twice the price. He provides value and you can’t really knock his form in any meaningful way.
Let's have fun and keep it civil.